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Auto Club: Gas Prices Jump As Motorists Hit By Triple Whammy

Weekly Fuel Prices Report

(LOS ANGELES, February 13, 2004) — Strong demand for gasoline, falling inventories and the switch to summer blend of fuel combined to send gas prices sharply higher last week for the sixth consecutive week, according to the Automobile Club of Southern California's Weekend Gas Watch. The national average for gasoline increased seven-tenths of a cent per gallon.

Currently, the average price of self-serve regular unleaded gasoline in the Los Angeles–Long Beach area is $1.889, which is 7.7 cents higher than last week. This price is 19 cents higher than last month and 15 cents higher than last year. In San Diego, the price is $1.898, which is 6.2 cents above last week's level, 18 cents above last month and 9 cents higher than last year.

Motorists in the central coast pay an average price of $1.891, which is 9.2 cents higher than last week's price, 19 cents above last month and 18 cents higher than last year. "We've seen a run up in prices in the past month due to the annual switch from winter formula gasoline to the summer formula. That has drawn down our inventories by about 3 percent," said Carol Thorp, Auto Club spokesperson. "In addition, California's demand for gasoline has increased 10 percent from last year. The combination of those factors means higher prices at the pump for at least the next 3–4 weeks."

The national average price of gasoline increased seven-tenths of a cent per gallon last week as markets absorbed news of OPEC's decision to reduce its output of crude oil. Many parts of the country are seeing prices begin to level off. In the next few weeks, suppliers will begin selling off large inventories of winter formula fuel in preparation to making the summer grade. This sell-off could send pump prices lower in many regions.

The Weekend Gas Watch monitors the average price of gasoline at metropolitan destinations throughout the nation. Average prices as of 12:01 a.m., Feb. 6:

Local and Nearby AreasRegularChange from last weekRecord Price
Los Angeles–Long Beach$1.889+$0.077$2.167 (3/22/03)
San Diego$1.898+$0.062$2.211 (3/20/03)
Santa Barbara–Santa Maria–Lompoc$1.891+$0.092$2.233 (8/27/03)
National Average$1.634+$0.007$1.737 (8/30/2003)
Other Areas Regular Change from last week Record Price
New York$1.839+$0.003$1.968 (9/6/2003)
Washington, D.C.$1.683+$0.004$1.797 (5/16/2001)
Boston$1.669-$0.001$1.812 (9/3/2003)
Philadelphia$1.663+$0.003$1.807 (9/3/2003)
Atlanta$1.571+$0.016$1.589 (3/18/2003)
Miami$1.690+$0.004$1.761 (3/18/2003)
Chicago$1.751-$0.001$2.142 (6/19/2000)
Detroit$1.650-$0.008$2.137 (6/20/2000)
Kansas City, MO$1.510+$0.040$1.790 (6/21/2000)
St. Louis$1.613-$0.032$1.767 (5/17/2001)
Denver$1.500-$0.007$1.780 (6/5/2001)
Dallas$1.569+$0.001$1.666 (5/12/2001)
Houston$1.550-$0.002$1.639 (5/12/2001)
Salt Lake City$1.594+$0.005$1.789 (9/4/2003)
Las Vegas, NV$1.789+$0.038$2.063 (3/25/03)
Phoenix, AZ$1.675 +$0.049$2.146 (8/26/03)
Seattle$1.707+$0.004$1.969 (9/4/2003)
San Francisco $1.973+$0.060$2.276 (3/19/2003)
Honolulu$1.992-$0.010$2.054 (10/2/2003)


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The Automobile Club of Southern California is a member club affiliated with the American Automobile Association (AAA) national federation and serves members in the following California counties: Inyo, Imperial, Kern, Los Angeles, Mono, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Tulare, and Ventura.